Audi is developing a compact crossover SUV that it will badge a Q3 Sportback, and today we have spy shots of a prototype for the high-performance version from the Audi Sport division: the RS Q3 Sportback.

The Q3 Sportback is a coupe-like crossover based on the same structure as the recently redesigned Q3, and judging by the various prototypes the styling will resemble the lines of the larger Q8.

We know this latest prototype is for the RS Q3 Sportback because of the exhaust tips; Audi Sport cars typically feature a pair of fat oval-shaped exhausts like those shown here. The prototype also sports lowered suspension, a performance brake package, and an aggressive front fascia.

2021 Audi RS Q3 Sportback spy shots - Image via S. Baldauf/SB-Medien

2021 Audi RS Q3 Sportback spy shots - Image via S. Baldauf/SB-Medien

The RS Q3 Sportback is being developed alongside a new generation of the RS Q3. Both are expected to feature the same 2.5-liter turbocharged inline-5 fitted to the RS 3 and TT RS. The engine delivers a stout 400 horsepower and 354 pound-feet of torque in those models and we can expect something similar for the RS Q3 and RS Q3 Sportback. Look for 0-60 mph acceleration to come in under 5.0 seconds.

The Q3 Sportback is due out later this year, with the debut likely to take place in September at the 2019 Frankfurt International Motor Show. The RS Q3 Sportback should follow sometime next year.

Given the strong demand for crossovers, the Q3 Sportback is just one of a handful of new crossovers in the works at Audi. Others in the works include the e-tron Sportback and Q4 e-tron electric models.